Posted in theology

The glorious promises of God

By Elizabeth Prata

Originally tweeted by B&S (@_B___S) on November 17, 2022.


I saw this clip on Twitter. I laughed. I got to thinking about how we should respond to sin and satan. I was reminded of Jesus’ exhortation to Peter when Peter said no, Lord you won’t die, and Jesus said,

Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s purposes, but men’s.” (Matthew 16:23).

It also reminded me of the scene in John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress where Christian was met by two lions on a narrow path. The lions were chained, but Christian saw not the chains. Christian halted his way, and paused, thinking to turn back, but the Porter above at the House Beautiful said:

Fear not the lions, for they are chained, and are placed there for trial of faith where it is, and for discovery of those that have none: keep in the midst of the path, and no hurt shall come unto thee. Then I saw that he went on, trembling for fear of the lions, but taking good heed to the directions of the Porter; he heard them roar, but they did him no harm. 

The Porter quoted Mark 4:40, And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

Faith includes trust. We must trust the Lord when good things happen and when (to us) bad things happen. We trust the promises of God.

What is promised to the believer

Salvation is the greatest promise. If you are saved, rest in this magnificent blessing. If someone you know is not saved, pray earnestly for their salvation.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written: “BUT THE RIGHTEOUS ONE WILL LIVE BY FAITH.” (Romans 1:16–17)

Are you weary?

Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary. (Isaiah 40:31).

Trust God to do what He said He will do in you:

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work among you will complete it by the day of Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:6).


He hears your night cries from your prayer closet! He hears your appeals from the hospital bedside! He hears your supplications through the sobs.

LORD, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will strengthen their heart, You will make Your ear attentive. (Psalm 10:17).


Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4).

The LORD makes promises. He does not have to interact with the people He created, but He does. He doesn’t have to make promises to us, but He does.

“by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.” (2 Peter 1:4)

I think this is remarkable. We have an incredible Father.


For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)

For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell. (Psalm 86:13)


But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: (John 15:26)


And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:7)

I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. (John 14:27)


Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. John 6:35

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. (Matthew 11:28-29)

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)


But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Corinthians 12:9)


Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him. (John 14:21)


He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away. (Revelation 21:4)


There are so many more promises, too, than can even be recorded here. He supplies all that His children need for a joyful, grace-filled, loving life here and forever in eternity. He delivers us, cleans us, makes us righteous, removes His wrath from our shoulders, fulfills our needs, grows us, sets an inheritance in heaven for us…through and because of His Son- the biggest gift and promise of all. (Genesis 3:15).

Because He is God, and there is no deceit in His mouth (1 Peter 2:22) every promise given to His children in the bible will come true.

Stand on His promises!

Put sin behind you, never mind the lions roaring at your feet. Move forward in joy and security, sister. Hold tight to His promises, lift your eyes above circumstances to see the glory that is above and will soon be ours in person to dwell with forever.

Tomorrow I’ll post a Thanksgiving blog and Friday I am starting the Thirty Days of Jesus, an advent series I post each year. May the Lord bless you today and every day.

Posted in theology

See what the Lord is doing: Update from Justin Peters

By Elizabeth Prata

I subscribe to Justin Peters Ministries because I like how Justin operates in truth and kindness, I like what he does (evangelism and his rebuttals against false doctrines like health/wealth or word-faith), and I like the encouraging things I read about what the Lord is doing through him.

His reports are uplifting. We need encouragement these days. I like Paul Washer’s mission updates, too. (HeartCry Missionary Society). We can get so caught up in our own spheres we might overlook the grace that is bestowed elsewhere.

Justin’s Youtube Channel is a wealth of information.

I would like to re-post his latest ministry update. I hope you find it encouraging too! Here is Justin:

Continue reading “See what the Lord is doing: Update from Justin Peters”
Posted in end time, prophecy

A word of encouragement

By Elizabeth Prata

Fellow Christians, as the Church Age draws to a close, the anger, mocking and scoffing grows. On internet chat boards, forums, blogs, and e-mails, the unsaved do rail and rebel in unloving and unforgiving manner. In real life, they mock and sneer, scorning our beliefs. Oppression, ridicule and persecution grows. Even witnessing to family members can be heart-breaking, as the most polite response is usually simply a deafening silence and at worst, rifts grow.

All this can bring a Christian down. It can cause one to despair and stumble, as we wonder if the tears that Jesus wipes from our face will be falling in grief because our loved ones are absent in glory.

Remember, Jesus knows this would be the circumstance in the end of days. He inspired Jude to write these words, as comforting to the church then as to us now:

A call to persevere

But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, in Jude 1:18-23, “In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.

These are the men who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit. But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit. Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. Be merciful to those who doubt; snatch others from the fire and save them; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh. Jude 1:18-23

To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen. (Jude 1:17-25)

Witness in love, pray for the lost, and persevere dear Brother and Sister. For He is able to keep us from falling, He is the most Worthy One to whom we shall be presented in due time and in great joy. Until then, “to others show mercy.”

Posted in theology

Are things spinning out of control? (Answer: No)

By Elizabeth Prata

So many spheres of our lives feels like they are unraveling, undergoing pressure, or otherwise getting worse than it was even a few years ago. It sure feels like things are spinning out of control.

They’re not.

I was musing on God’s orderliness. Time and time again in the Bible He shows us just how much He is in control. Everything happens in His schedule, in His timetable, in His timing, for His reasons. Nothing escapes His notice. Nothing happens unless He causes it, allows it, or oversees it and then brings it all to the good for those who love Him.

Continue reading “Are things spinning out of control? (Answer: No)”
Posted in bible, God, prayer

Peter’s impetuousness

By Elizabeth Prata

Picture Peter and friends on the boat, in the middle of Lake Galilee.

Suddenly one of the men in the boat looked out and said, “Someone is walking on the water!” Sure enough, with robes flowing in the wind, here comes Jesus walking across the whitecaps.

Peter cried out, “Is that You, Lord?”
The Lord answered, “It is I”
Peter said, “Can I come?”

Continue reading “Peter’s impetuousness”
Posted in theology

Amazement at how the world is going

By Elizabeth Prata

Christians I know are experiencing complex emotions these days. They are alternately angry, fearful, and mournful of the things coming upon the world. See, we know what is ahead for this last chapter of human experience. Though we have always known the fate of the lost and unsaved, sinking in their sin, but because the prophesies are nearing fulfillment at this time, we are starting to see it. And there is a difference between knowing and seeing. Romans 1 is being played out before our eyes.

We see the sin piling up, we see sinners sinking, drowning in their anger and pain. Being separated from God, they are crying out to their idols, voices wafting onto the wind, unheard.

We read of corruption and hate and shooting and evil and lying and false religions and it goes on and on. All we can do is stand on the lakeshore and tell the sinking, perishing ones the truth, that there is a helicopter above their head with a lifeline. Grab it! Grab it! we shout. Many won’t. It is excruciating to see so many refuse to listen. They will not look up at their redemption, and one by one, they strangle in their heavy sins and perish. We cry. Why?

What we are feeling these days is mourning. We are watching the death throes of our world, we are watching the perishing of many souls, we are watching the hardening of heart by God in real time. We sink to our knees in grief.

But God.

But God made a way for sinners to be redeemed,
But God gave us the Holy Spirit so that we have ability to pursue righteousness,
But God gave us opportunity to know Him, enjoy Him and give Him glory,
But God sent His Son to die on the cross, be buried, resurrected and ascended to the right hand of the Father,
But God adopted us into His family!

We Christians above all people in the world have so many blessings. We possess the knowledge of and even the indwelling of the Most High God. We are comforted by His promises.

But God in addition to His holiness, also has the aspect of Justice.

We tend to forget that John the Baptist the forerunner to Jesus came speaking not of love and joy and comfort and encouragement, “He first preached preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins;” (Luke 3:3). He spoke of wrath and the coming of Jesus. (Luke 3:716). The Gospel of Jesus Christ has two parts, and the second part is almost upon us: His Second Coming. He could come at any time. Or, death could come for you, any moment.

Are you ready to face the Holy God who created you? To defend your sins, to be tried and found guilty, and be thrown into the Lake of Fire in the end?

Of are you ready to face the Holy God who created you and fling yourself at the feet of Jesus begging for forgiveness? Who will then pursue holiness with the indwelling Spirit propelling you along until death, and then be ready to be ushered into heavenly glory? Are you ready to persevere, continue to do good in the face of darkness and hate? For there is LIGHT at the end.

I continually try to remind us all, me included, to have an eternal perspective. To keep looking up. Not to despair. To not grow weary in the doing good.

Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, I will also help you, I will also uphold you with My righteous right hand.’ Isaiah 41:10

Posted in theology

God’s sovereignty brings peace to the soul in troubled times

By Elizabeth Prata

God doesn’t have to patch. He doesn’t have to regroup. He doesn’t have to do a workaround. He doesn’t have to circle back to this. There is no Plan B. He plans the end from the beginning.

Witness: Joseph. Thrown into the pit, his sale as a slave, the rising up to Potipher’s house, his throwing down again into jail, his appearance before Pharaoh, God giving Pharoah a dream, the famine, the long lost family coming to Joseph…all planned. All moved along in perfect timing God had ordained.

I mean, look at the genealogies. Each person married whom God wanted to marry right up until Joseph and Mary were betrothed. Each pairing throughout all time until the man God wanted to unite with Mary becoming pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Amazing

In turbulent times such as these, when we are unsettled, let us rest on the fact of God’s sovereignty. RC Sproul was amazing in explaining God’s kingly hand over all which happens:

Understand that when we talk about God’s ordaining things, there are different ways God ordains things to come to pass. This doesn’t necessarily mean that God jumps down onto the planet and makes something happen through a direct and immediate personal involvement on His part. But the trick in the statement has to do with the word “ordain.” All that statement means is that God is sovereign over anything that happens. Nothing in this world can happen apart from divine sovereignty.

We distinguish sometimes between God’s efficacious will and His permissive will. You’ve heard those kinds of distinctions, but let me state this in the easiest of all possible terms. If something happens in this world, whether by the power of men, the power of nature, the power of machines, etc., God always has the power and authority to at least prevent it from happening, does He not? And if He does not prevent it from happening, that means at least this much: He has chosen to let it happen.

That doesn’t mean that He applauds it. That doesn’t mean He’s in favor of it insofar as He gives His divine sanction to it. But He does allow it to happen (again, not always in the sense of approving) and, in so allowing, He is making a decision and making that decision sovereignly. He knows in advance what is going to happen, and if He decrees that it shall happen, He is retaining His sovereignty over it.

If things happen in this world outside the sovereignty of God, then that would simply mean God is not sovereign. 

There is not one maverick molecule in the universe, Sproul said! All is sustained by Jesus. Nations war. Nations rise. Nations fall. God ordains all that happens, from the big things right down to each lungful of air we breathe and the places our blood course through our bodies, or doesn’t course.

We are fortunate we know Him as a good and gracious God. All that He does is for the good of those who love Him. Times may be scary, prices may be rising, but he will never let us beg bread or remain in fear. His word bathes our soul, cleanses our mind, dissolves the weeds of fear. Rely on God through His word, through His love, and through His promises

  1. God’s presence brings joy — Psalm 16:11 “You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
  2. God will fill me to overflowing with hope — Romans 15:13 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
  3. God will strengthen and help me — Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Pray for a balm today. He will give it.

EPrata photo
Posted in theology

“Don’t worry, be happy”

By Elizabeth Prata

In 1988 Bobby McFerrin released his soon-to-be hit song Don’t Worry, Be Happy. I remember the fervor back then around that song. Legitimately, it was a good song. It was the first a cappella song to get to a number one position on the top 40 singles on the Billboard chart. Don’t Worry Be Happy stayed there for 2 weeks, bumping out Guns N Roses’ Sweet Child O’ Mine.

People were also amazed that McFerrin did all the vocals himself. The “instruments” in the a cappella song are all overdubbed voice parts and other mouth sounds made by McFerrin, using no instruments at all; says Wikipedia. Pretty neat.

I was cooking the other day and turned on my Pandora to my Paul Simon channel. McFerrin’s song came on. It’s amazing how being in Christ gives you a totally different perspective. I was 28 years old when Don’t Worry Be Happy came out. I would not come to Christ for another 15 years. And I’ve gone on for almost 20 more years beyond that. I can’t detect how my sanctification is going in the short term, day after day, but looking back over the long term I can see progress.

The song begins this way,

Here’s a little song I wrote
You might want to sing it note for note
Don’t worry, be happy
In every life we have some trouble
But when you worry you make it double

This is a truism. Worrying never solved anything. But when you are outside of Christ, worry is your idol. They worry because they have nothing else to hold on to. They do not know the future, they have no context in which to place the worrisome situation. So they worry, they can’t help it. I used to worry greatly. I was a recently divorced young teacher trying to hold on to my house on a skim salary, working three jobs, and wondering if this was all there was to life. I worried.

The song continues,

Ain’t got no place to lay your head
Somebody came and took your bed
Don’t worry, be happy

If I was outside of Christ I SURE would be worried if I did not have a place to lay my head! It would be THE consuming issue of my day. I can’t NOT worry about it, just because Bobby McFerrin says not to. Making the mortgage each month was a victory. I desperately wanted to keep the place where I lay my head.

McFerrin goes on with another problem or two that is common to people, and offers the same advice, don’t worry and be happy.

It is a good idea to nurture and practice a positive mindset, that is true. Actress and comedian Betty White also practiced a positive mindset, all her long life. She didn’t worry. She was happy.

Then she died.

And went to hell (probably). She is no longer happy.

The mindset that Jesus gives us is an eternal one. Now that I’m on this side of the cross, I understand worry is a sin and joy is our permanent status quo. With that context, life’s daily problems seem small. He provides for us and always will. Knowing that removes the worry. He gave us forgiveness of sins, and offers us daily grace. This gives us joy. It is easier to be joyful when we have a perfect Father to go to in order to cast all our cares upon Him. When we have been freed from the power of sin and someday will dwell outside the existence of sin at all.

I still have the same slim salary and I’m still trying to hang on to the place where I lay my head, but my joy isn’t diminished by my circumstances, because that joy is outside of me, from Christ and being In Christ. I don’t worry (or when I do I take it to Christ) because I have the God of all Universe on His throne as my Father.

Before I was saved I tried to have a positive mindset, and I tried not to worry. It would work for a while. Then a problem would come. I’d solve it. Feeling satisfied with my problem-solving abilities, I’d be happy again with no worries. And another problem would scoot down the highway of life and crash into me. The cycle repeats. Underneath all that is the business of suppressing the truth in unrighteousness, battling my conscience, and performing sins every day, while expending energy to convince myself that I was ‘a good person.’

For the unsaved, it’s a lot.

Life’s ups and downs are blessedly minimized when we gain the eternal perspective of seeing eternity through Jesus. Seeing time in the looooong term reduces those mountainous ups and downs to minimal bumps.

Being in Christ makes all the difference for life now and eternity then. But do we show it? Are we unworried and happy? Do we exhibit the joy of Christ, the peace that passes all understanding?

I pray that I exhibit the peace that passes understanding, the joy that adorns the countenance, the conviction to live a grace-filled life. I don’t always. But it is a goal. We have that ‘don’t worry, be happy’ ability – thanks to the Holy Spirit in us.

John wrote in his Gospel of Jesus that Jesus promised,

If you remain in Me, and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples. Just as the Father has loved Me, I also have loved you; remain in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will remain in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and remain in His love. These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full. John 15:7-11.

There is a difference between happiness and joy. Prior to salvation, my happiness faded as fast as smoke from a lit candle when adversity reared its head. Even when adversity remained at bay, my happiness came and went, inexplicably.

Joy though. Joy! That is an internal state, less dependent on circumstances. You can have daily ups and downs but the thread remaining is joy in Christ. He is our foundation, our anchor, or stay. Don’t worry yes, because worry is a sin. But be happy? OK. But better to be joyous.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23).

What is the first of the fruit mentioned? Joy. Barnes Notes says

It is not without design, evidently, that the apostle uses the word “Spirit” here, as denoting that these things do not flow from our own nature. The vices above enumerated are the proper “works” or result of the operations of the human heart; the virtues which he enumerates are produced by a foreign influence – the agency of the Holy Spirit. Hence, Paul does not trace them to our own hearts, even when renewed. 

Therein lay the difference. Happiness is external. Joy is internal. It is also eternal. Don’t worry. Be happy- IN CHRIST.

EPrata photo
Posted in poetry, Uncategorized

Kay Cude poetry: When We Remember

Kay Cude poetry. Used with permission. Artist’s statement below.

As I continue to go through them my perspective is reinforced with the fundamental truth: it is necessary that we learn and grow through “issues” and situations we’d rather avoid. They will either drive us deeper into Scripture and prayer, or we will allow them to drive us into despondency, confusion and sorrow. When we experience breath-knocking blows, above all else it is necessary that we “remember” Who our first love is and that He, Christ is our ever-present secure help. He is our All-in-All, our sufficiency, protection, strength and giver of wisdom. We must remember that issues and circumstance have eternal purpose for His beloved redeemed.